The case Meritor Savings Bank V. Vinson is a landmark case for employee's rights in the 20th century and beyond. This case centered on a sexual harassment claim from Mechelle Vinson against her former employer and boss. Vinson's claim was that she was sexual harassed and was forcibly coerced into sexual acts with Sidney Taylor, her manager, while working for Meritor Savings Bank. The results of this case, helped establish what Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is today.
Years before this case existed, lawmakers put into law Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Under that law, it prohibited actions regarding discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin in employment matters. This act also created the EEOC, Equal Employment Opportunities Commission to enforce Title VII.
In this case, Taylor who was the Vice President of Meritor Bank hired Vinson as a teller for Meritor Savings Bank. For Taylor, there was an instant attraction to Vinson and he pursued her sexually. Vinson started meeting Taylor outside of work and the relationship grew to be of the sexual nature. Taylor, being her boss, started showing possessive displays of affection within the work place in front of job candidates and current employees. Taylor then suggested that Vinson apply for a higher-ranking job he supervised. Vinson deliberated on it, decided to interview, and was then promoted. Taylor and Vinson had many sexual encounters, 40-50 times, during the course of her employment with the bank. Taylor started getting more aggressive with his impromptu barrage of sexual encounters in places like the women's bathroom. When Vinson notified Taylor that she had developed and was embarking on a relationship with another male, Taylor was displeased. Vinson then was requesting and or taking time off from work: which later was the said reason, by Taylor and Meritor Savings Bank, for terminating Vinson's' employment. Shortly after her termination from the bank, Vinson filed a claim with the EEOC stating that she was sexually discriminated against during the course of her employment with the bank. She claimed that Taylor's behavior was rude and insidious towards her sexually at the workplace and that she did not welcome his actions but obliged to comply, fearing to lose her job if she did not. Although she had claimed this, her having several sexual encounters with the defendant and not filing a claim with the firm, initially, did not help her case.
When the case went to the district court and then later the U.S. Supreme Court, the banks defense was that Vinson was engaged into this relationship voluntarily and...